No pics yet but come to think of it, I should snap a few of my new baby while she's being built.
The last I saw the frame was at Hugh's shop on December 22. The frame build was complete, save for final braze-ons and prep. for paint.
The Rohloff was to be ordered and the next step will be to build up and install the rear wheel, pannier racks, etc., for a final mock-up, in order to determine placement for the final items to be brazed on.
Regarding specs, I will be using a steel tubeset, with a mix of True Temper Verus, Verus HT, OX Gold, OX Platinum and Columbus Zona--all on the beefy side, for self-contained, all-road/off-road touring.
In no particular order: TIG welded, 71.5 Head Tube, 72.5 Seat Tube, 45.5 cm. chain-stays (True Temper 29'er stays) eccentric bottom bracket, 26 inch wheels, Salsa suspension-corrected 1 1/8" diameter rigid fork (True Temper tubing) Rohloff Speedhub disc version, 160 mm Avid mechanicals front/rear, S&S frame couplers, chain-stay mounted disc brake carrier/vertical dropouts courtesy of Mr. Richard Schwinn of Waterford/Gunnar (nice guy and a nice favour which allows one to run a rear disc brake without pannier rack attachment issues that you have with seat-stay mounted disc brakes).
Hmmm, what else? OMM Sherpa pannier racks, Schmidt front dyno hub, Ortlieb panniers, SKS fenders, Thudbuster ST seat post, Pletchser/ESGE centre-stand, Schwalbe Marathon XR's.
Not fully set on the rest of the components but this gives a pretty good picture.
Bottom bracket height will of course vary a bit with the EBB but is essentially on the lower end of "standard mountain bike", based on the profile of a 2 inch wide tire. When running with narrower/lower profile street touring tires, this will drop the BB height for a lower C of G, for road use.
Also, the wheel base will be a bit over 109 cm, so fairly long and Hugh is installing canti brake mounts and a derailleur hanger for versality in the event of disaster "way out there". We will also be setting it up with a flat bar, with option for running drop bars. Flat bars also make sense for packing in a travel case. I have purchased a Modolo Trekking Bar and will be experimenting with that.
I have put a lot of research time into this project. It's also not cheap but it's been a fun learning and creative process, as well. I have thoroughly enjoyed collaborating with Hugh, who is a mechanical engineer, researching my ideas and various "engineering issues", presenting them to him for his consideration and then working our way forward, with his input to achieve consensus on the particular issues at hand.
I should start my own "build thread" and post photos/updates there. It will be fun to share what I am doing.
Finally, a plug for my builder, Hugh Black: http://www.truenorthcycles.com/default.asp
Closer to Free